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Shawna Snyder

medical illustration of The circulatory system. Arterial and venous systems are shown (and major blood vessels: aorta, super vena cava, inferior vena cava, subclavian, carotid, jugular, etc.)

Skeletal system, the bony scaffold of the body.

Nervous systems - Central NS consists of the brain and spinal cord, shown in pink. Peripheral NS are the nerves that branch off the brain and spinal cord and innervate the rest of the body. 

These illustrations were created for a field guide on wilderness medicine.
medical illustration of Lymphedema: swelling of the arms or legs. Damage to the lymphatic system causes excess fluid building up in body tissues. Since therapy options vary based on the disease stage of the patient, proper diagnosis is vital for effective treatment. Late stage lymphedema of the upper limb is shown, with an unaffected arm presented for rapid comparison.
medical illustration of Anatomy of the Third Ventricle depicts the borders of the third ventricle and choroid plexus. Giving careful consideration to the subject matter, the brain is cut in half and shown at an oblique angle to show the dimensionality of this narrow structure.

brain, choroid plexus, CSF, third ventricle, inner brain anatomy, thalamus, pituitary gland, optic nerve, pons, spinal cord
medical illustration of The Ahmed drainage device has a specialized valve that instantly drains excess aqueous humor from the eye’s anterior chamber into the deep conjunctival space where it is reabsorbed. This conceptual trade show booth could be used at an ophthalmolgical convention to educate eye surgeons on the new device.

Glaucoma, treatment, device, implant, exhibit, commercial, promotion
medical illustration of Redesign of the START (Simple Triage and Rapid Treatment) algorithm for rapid triage. Emphasis placed on speed, simplicity, and utilization. Reference:
medical illustration of A congential defect closed the subclavian artery as it diverged from the common carotid. Exercise of the right arm caused retrograde flow from the vertebral and mammary arteries, leading to severe headaches. A Dacron graft was placed to allow normal blood flow into the subclavian artery.

surgery, aorta, common carotid, subclavian, artery, arteries, dacron graft, medical device
medical illustration of Vasculature of the uterus demonstrates the anastomoses of the uterine vessels with the ovarian and vaginal vessels. Few illustrations complete the story of the vasculature of the uterus by including the myometrial arcuate arteries with the progression and disintegration of the spiral arteries over time. Relevant nearby surgical and structural anatomy are displayed.
medical illustration of The colon was laparoscopically removed from a young patient with chronic constipation. The lymphatics of the mesentary were spared. 

GI, GI tract, surgery, laparoscopic, minimally invasive, appendix, removal, ileum, mesentery.
medical illustration of An HIV trimer binding to a human T helper cell. 

HIV, virus, molecular, illustration, cells, gp41 trimer, gp120 trimer, cd4-bs2, cd4 receptor
medical illustration of After CanadiEM. 
Simplified the START algorithm even further with a pocket-sized (or mobile device sized) image. Use to assess, triage, and properly tag victims in disaster zones. 
Rapid dissemination, mobile education, quick response, team, paramedic, first responder, save lives, triage, medical education, emergency medicine, simple, guide, critical care, disaster, survival, wilderness, austere
medical animation of Developed as part of my Master’s thesis at Johns Hopkins University. Visualization of the challenges associated with the spatio-temporal control of diverse cell culture in engineering cardiac tissue. 

Stem cell, tissue engineering, regenerative medicine, vascular, vascularization, data, pericytes, cardiomyocytes, cardiac, myocardial infarction
medical animation of Quick section of a patient education animation created for Rendia, Inc. 
Starting at the back of the eye, we fly into the retina to see a cluster of photoreceptor cells with abnormal blood vessel growth. Photodynamic therapy is used to stop the growth of the blood vessels.

Assets modeled in ZBrush, rendered in 3DS Max.

animation, 2D animation, 3D models, macula, optic nerve, macular, degeneration, photoreceptors, retina, eye, eye disease, laser, therapy, patient education
medical animation of Short animation for Dermal Fillers. Created for Rendia Inc. 
Abridged from the full-length. 
All visuals are copyright Rendia Inc.

watercolor animation, after effects, ink blot, dermatology, blotch, watercolor, paint, effect, sleek, painted, spread, woman, dermal, fillers, face, skin
medical animation of Clip of a full-length narrative created for Rendia Inc.
Patient Education animation, I conducted the research, managed scriptwriter, and created the animation from storyboards to final product. 
Cyclodiode laser is a cutting edge glaucoma treatment. It's best for patients who cannot have traditional laser treatments. We made this animation to quickly and clearly communicate how the treatment helps manage glaucoma by ablating ciliary body tissue.
medical illustration of Created in collaboration between Mass Audubon and the National Aquarium, this illustration explains the geological and climatic events that snare more and more Kemp's ridley sea turtles in Cape Cod Bay. 

ecology, herpetology, cold-blooded, reptiles, turtles, sea turtles,
medical illustration of The Giant Ichneumon Wasp positions itself above a larva to be paralyzed following a series of contortions. Modifications to its abdominal anatomy allow such extremes.  

Ovipositor, parasitize, larva, stylus, configurations, insect, wasps, bugs, egg laying
medical illustration of A cavernous malformation (cavernoma, cavernous angioma, or cav-mal) is a vascular malformation – a tangle of thin-walled capillaries that can leak and damage tissue if occurring in the brain or spinal cord.

The layout was restricted to just one page to reflect the size requirements of a typical surgical journal.

Laminoplasty, cervical spine, spinal cord, spinal cord surgery, dura mater, arachnoid, pia mater, microscopic surgery, microinstruments, vascular,
medical illustration of Tingling, pain, numbness in the fourth and fifth fingers indicated ulnar nerve entrapment. Decompression was performed at the elbow to relieve the nerve.
I observed and sketched 2 ulnar nerve decompression surgeries. The major steps of the procedure were outlined and drawn. 

compression, surgery, instruments, muscle, surgical steps
medical illustration of Anatomical illustration showing the origins and muscular perforations of the lumbar nerve plexus. 

bone, spine, pelvic inlet, psoas muscle, lumbar, nerves, nerve plexus, spinal nerve, education


B.A. in Biological/Pre-Medical Illustration (2015) M.A. in Biological & Medical Illustration from Johns Hopkins University (2018) My goal is to create clear, accurate visuals that bring medical and scientific information to life. Currently, I work full-time as a patient educator animator on eye, ear, nose and throat conditions. I also manage the art pipeline, the scriptwriting process, and create full-length 2D and 3D animations. Part-time, I'm a freelance illustrator for the JHU Laboratory for Craniofacial & Orthopaedic Tissue Engineering. Working with Dr. Grayson and his students, I've created journal covers, schematics, and figures for peer-reviewed articles and grant applications. I've also had the pleasure of freelancing for a number of other clients. Creating medical art that bridges the gap between healthcare professionals and their audiences, whether general or specialized, is my specialty.


Animation, Black & White, Cartoon, Color, Design, Information Graphics, Line, 3D, Models, Voiceovers/Narration


Anatomy, Biology, Cardiac Surgery / Cardiology, Cell biology / Histology, Dermatology, Disease Management, Emergency Medicine, Entomology, Gastroenterology, General Medicine, General Surgery, Medical Devices, Molecular Biology, Natural Science / Nature, Neuroscience, Neurosurgery, Ophthalmology, Vascular Surgery, Zoology, Injuries, Legal Exhibits, Mechanism of Action (MOA), Plastic Surgery